a long December and there’s reason to believe maybe this year will be better than the last

I cant believe we’re already into December. This is the very last full month that Drew and I will ever spend childless. It is exciting and scary all at once.

A lot needs to get done this month- some chores, some planning, some basic tasks, even some personal development. I figured I’d put it all down in a list- I feel more organized that way. And then hopefully we’ll get it all accomplished.

1. Mail Christmas presents. Last year I thought 10 days was plenty of time and the things we sent to California still showed up late. Luckily some of our gifts this year were internet orders and went out already. The rest we are shipping to their various homes on December 11th. (which means I need to spend next week wrapping and finding boxes…)

2. Write and send Christmas cards. I feel like we have a bit more time for this, but not much.

3. Finish reading Hypnobirthing. Its been AMAZING so far and has made me feel so much more relaxed about the labor and delivery process already. I still have a few chapters to go though- and I haven’t even listened to the CD once yet!

4. Find a pediatrician!! I have appointments with a couple next week. I’m really hopeful because they are REALLY convenient (5 minutes from home and at the other end of the hallway from my midwives!) I found out after scheduling my meetings that one of them is really highly recommended by my mommies group. Fingers crossed!

5. Look into some other childcare options. I found out today that the YMCA (our #1 choice) is not taking any more babies until May and even then our priority falls after several siblings. It was heartbreaking. We went ahead and told her to keep our name on the list just in case, but it means we will need care for at least a month after I go back to work and maybe longer if we don’t get in at all. We do have a space secured at the facility down the street and if worse comes to worse, we can send him there. I just feel so uneasy about it and that tells me something. I will see if there are any other centers we can try (though I think we’ve exhausted our resources) so in the meantime, I am going to start investigating in home care. *sigh*

6. Cook, cook, cook! My plan is to do big batch cooking every weekend this month and freeze most of it. That way Drew and I should have plenty of meals waiting for us when we are just too tired and/or busy with Griffin to cook. If it works out, I may continue throughout the year to help with getting meals together after work. (so any of my friends & family out there with awesome make ahead meal recipes, feel free to e-mail me!)

7. Finish cleaning and organizing the house. One of my biggest pet peeves is feeling disorganized and not being able to find things. Drew and I want our lives to be as simple as possible once Griffin arrives. This means getting rid of a lot of the clutter and unnecessary items we’ve had building up for years. We spent two weekends in the basement, last weekend were the dressers and closets. We don’t have very much left to do (I’m thinking kitchen cabinets and my office among other things) but I’m excited for everything in the house to either go away or have a home within the next couple of weeks!

8. Take some more classes. Drew and I have our all day childbirth preparation class this Saturday. I was thinking it would also be helpful to take a breastfeeding class and the “how to deal with the new baby” class (i.e. diapering/ bathing etc). I don’t know if those classes are offered in December so maybe I’m too late- but I’ll call tomorrow!

9. Finalize my birth plan, give a copy to my midwife and keep a copy to take to the hospital. We completed the basic birth plan that the hospital provides, but I would like to write something up a bit more detailed.

10. Pack my hospital bag! Drew is SO sweet and already packed up some of my favorite movies and bought me lots of Gatorade to take with me (lest I get dehydrated). I still need to get clothes together, put songs into a playlist for my ipod, toiletries, the camera, and Griffin’s “coming home” outfit!

11. Get work under control. I feel like this is my most daunting task by far. I keep wanting to wrap things up so that I can leave a clean desk for the people picking up my slack while I’m on leave. But instead I have gotten even more projects and paperwork so I’m feeling buried. I guess I can only do what I can do and they will manage… but it is a huge area of stress for me right now.

12. Enjoy the holidays! Every year I have the intention of making a great holiday season but then when it comes down to it I come home from work too exhausted to do anything and it all feels rushed and last minute until all of a sudden it’s mid January! This year I got all of my shopping out of the way early. I want to watch all the bad holiday movies, do some baking (which I NEVER do), drive around looking at Christmas lights, and enjoy every second I can with Drew.

I’m sure there are some things here that I’m forgetting. I’ll write them down as they come to me. I do hope that it is, in fact, a long December! We have a lot to do before the new year!

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